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IMF supports Zimbabwe to produce national accounts data

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IMF
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The International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Regional Technical Assistance Center for Southern Africa conducted a mission to Zimbabwe in October this year to help the country in the production of national accounts statistics for macroeconomic policymaking, the IMF said in a statement released early Tuesday.

Among other things, the mission reviewed the recently produced estimates of annual gross domestic product (GDP) for 2022, and discussed plans for Zimbabwe to rebase its GDP.

Zimbabwe’s last full rebasing took place several years ago, with a base year of 2012.

The mission also discussed Zimbabwe’s inaugural national economic census planned for 2025-26 and its value-added tax (VAT) data. It noted that the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZIMSTAT) has made considerable progress in cleaning the VAT turnover data, which it mainly uses to compile GDP estimates.

“The new base year will be 2025, and the national economic census will be in three phases (mapping, listing, and data collection). The data collection phase, previously planned to be a census, will now be a sample survey. The rest of the rebasing exercise still needs detailed plans to be created,” the IMF said.

At the end of the mission, the IMF made several recommendations that should be completed by December this year, which include the need for the ZIMSTAT to disseminate 2022 GDP estimates, the redevelopment of plans and associated timeframes for the rebasing of the national accounts and resolving remaining issues in the VAT turnover data that is affecting quarterly GDP estimates.’

The IMF also recommended that the ZIMSTAT should complete phases one and two of the national economic census by next year.

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